Donald Trump’s team of snake oil salesmen is out and about, trying their darndest to shift all blame for the continuing incompetent federal response to the COVID-19 pandemic onto everyone from China to the Obama administration, while also saying things aren’t so bad. Trump’s Director of Trade and Manufacturing Policy Peter Navarro hit up a few cable news networks to talk about the overtaxed supply chain and how the Trump administration is strong like bull and there’s nothing to see here, and if there is something to see here it’s China’s fault … or maybe Joe Biden’s fault. However, like all con men, Navarro loses his cool when pressed on actual facts, and his interview on CNN with host Brianna Keilar was something to see.
After listening to Navarro explain how great the Trump administration is, Keilar asked Navarro about the ability of the federal government—under Trump—to produce and supply the hundreds of thousands of ventilators that will be needed in hospitals across the United States. Ventilators that will hopefully save people’s lives. It is here that Navarro, taking the racist Republican party line that the coronavirus and the subsequent inability of the United States government to be prepared for a pandemic is somehow all China’s fault.
After it became clear that Navarro wasn’t even going to approach talking about what the supply chain he oversees was going to be able to do for Americans in need, Keilar cut him off. “Peter, why are you wasting your time on this and not solving the problem that we have?”
To this, Navarro attempted to explain that he was explaining his racist bullshit rant, so Keilar once again interrupted him to reiterate the question he was supposed to be answering: ”I am asking you are we able to get a million ventilators.”
Navarro went in again on how these goddamn Chinese people have unleashed a 500-year “flood” and we were only prepared for a “100-year flood.” But, the Chinese, right? To which Keilar, to her credit, cut him off again to say, ”You're wasting everyone's time with this. It's 2020. The president was elected in 2016. Can you get to a million ventilators?”
Navarro begin whining about being cut off, asking if he could be allowed to finish and then literally being allowed to finish the phrase “can you let me finish,” enough times that he could have performed a monologue in an acting class by the time he was done whining. Once he realized no one was talking except him, Navarro began to question how many ventilators we really need. So Keilar had to interrupt him again. “Peter if you think speaking in facts and truth is frightening to people, you have a problem.”
Navarro then took the tack that Keilar was being unfair and too critical. So Keilar let him have the floor, to answer, for the last time, how many ventilators and when could they be delivered to people fighting COVID-19 around the country.
Navarro’s only response was to once again go with the Trump administration’s childlike insistence that nothing is their fault. “We all as a country got dealt a bad hand by China.” Keilar looked stupefied by this profoundly worthless statement from the U.S. director of trade and manufacturing. She decided to end the interview right there saying “Peter, that is just a waste of time to say that. I’m gonna leave it there. Peter Navarro—“
Navarro tried to interrupt here, but Keilar had had enough, “No, Peter Navarro, we’re out of time, we’re out of time and that is just ridiculous.”
And the end of the interview after Navarro’s ran out of half-baked excuses.